Show ContentsPasswaters History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Passwaters surname comes from the medieval family name Passelewe, which is derived from the Old French words "passe," meaning "to pass," and "l'ewe," or "the water;" thus it was likely originally a nickname for a ferry operator or a merchant, who often crossed the water. [1] It may also have been used as a topographic name for someone who lived on the opposite side of a watercourse from the main settlement.

Another source believes the was " belonging to Parslow (? Parsloes, Essex) [Old English hlaew, a (burial) mound, hill: without the evidence of early forms of the name nothing definite can be said as to the origin of the first element, which may, represent the Anglo-Saxon personal name Pœghere." [2]

And another source notes the name may be from "Passelewe, from Pasloup, Etampes, Isle of France." [3]

Early Origins of the Passwaters family

The surname Passwaters was first found in Berkshire, where Radulfus Passaqua is listed in the Domesday Book of 1086. [4] Later, Ralph Passelewa was listed at Bury St Emunds, Suffolk 1104-1106. Back in Berkshire, Hmo passelowe was listed there in the Curia Regis Rolls of 1194. Later, we found Edmund Passeleye recorded in the Assize Rolls for Kent in 1314. Simon Passelegh (Passelewe) was found in the Subsidy Rolls for Essex in 1327 and much later Nycholas Passloo was found in the Subsidy Rolls for Suffolk in 1524. [5]

The Domesday tenant's name survives in Drayton Parslow, Buckinhamshire and at Parsloes in Dagenham, Essex. Other spellings include: Passelewesmede 1390, Pashlewes 1456, Parslo(w)es 1609, 1634. [5]

Early History of the Passwaters family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Passwaters research. Another 136 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1194, 1273, 1450, 1327, 1524, 1637, 1439, 1794, 1802, 1511, 1585 and 1585 are included under the topic Early Passwaters History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Passwaters Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Parslow, Perslow, Parslew, Farslew, Parsley, Paslow, Paslie, Pasley, Pashley, Pashler, Paslew, Pashley, Pasley, Passley, Pashlie, Paslie, Passlie, Parsloe, Paslew, Passwater, Passleigh, Paslegh, Parslowe, Passlewmede, Passlaw and many more.

Early Notables of the Passwaters family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Osbert Parsley (c. 1511-1585), English composer and chorister. From a boy chorister at Norwich Cathedral, Parsley worked there throughout his musical career. His longest composition, Conserva me, domine, was in a graceful polyphonic style...
Another 41 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Passwaters Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Passwaters family

Some of the first settlers of this family name or some of its variants were: Edward Parsley, who arrived in Virginia in 1662; John Parsley, who came to Maryland in 1674; Anthony and Elizabeth Parsley, who settled in Maryland in 1679.


Contemporary Notables of the name Passwaters (post 1700) +

  • Col. David A. Passwaters III, American commander of the 261st Theater Tactical Signal Brigade (2010-)


  1. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  3. ^ The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  4. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  5. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)


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